IND vs WI: Should KL Rahul Open For India In ODIs? - Ajit Agarkar Gives His Opinion

Updated - 05 Feb 2022, 02:01 PM

Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul
Image Source: Twitter

Former Indian cricketer Ajit Agarkar emphasised on the conundrum of India’s opening combination in ODI cricket.

KL Rahul, who was India’s stand-in skipper for the South Africa ODIs last month, opened the innings with Shikhar Dhawan.

As newly appointed white-ball skipper Rohit Sharma came back to the squad after recovering from his hamstring injury, the question is who will open the innings for India.

KL Rahul
KL Rahul

Since 2020, Rahul has been seen batting more often in the middle order, mostly at No.5, a position where he averages 56.63, which is even better than his opening position average of 46.53.

India is already trying to solve the middle-order batting woes that once again haunted them in their embarrassing whitewash against the Proteas.

India may open with KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma: Ajit Agarkar

Agarkar opined that Rahul should open with Rohit Sharma if he won’t be regularly batting in the middle-order.

I think that’s the first thing they need to decide, whether he is an opener or a middle-order batter because he captained in South Africa and he opened, which to me, it was a little bit disappointing because he had been successful at the No. 4 or 5 position, that’s the role they were looking at,” Agarkar said on Star Sports.

“If that is not going to be the case, then again you have got to stick to what you decide. If he is going to be the opener, then you may as well open with him and Rohit in this series,” he added.

Not sure where Shikhar Dhawan would be after one and a half years: Ajit Agarkar

Shikhar Dhawan scored a couple of fifties in the South Africa ODI series, in fact, he was the highest run-scorer for India with 169 runs from three innings at an average of 56.33.

However, Agarkar feels that Dhawan won’t continue with the Indian team after two years and for that youngsters should be given opportunities to experience batting at the top.

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan. (Photo: Twitter)

“That will be interesting to see because Shikhar Dhawan is there as well. I am not sure in another year or year-and-a-half’s time where Shikhar Dhawan would be even though he has got runs in South Africa,” Agarkar said.

“You have got a couple of explosive players, someone like an Ishan Kishan or even someone like a Rishabh Pant, who knows whether it’s worth giving him a go at the top of the order,” he added.

India will play against West Indies in three ODI matches and as many T20 Internationals, the white-ball series starts with the first ODI on February 6 in Ahmedabad.

Also Read: Challenge For Rohit Sharma Is To Stay Fit And Play Everything – Ajit Agarkar


India National Cricket Team KL Rahul Rohit Sharma Shikhar Dhawan